Littleton, Colo. — At the annual Geo-Frontiers Conference in Miami, the International Association of Geosynthetic Installers (IAGI) Board announced a new Give Back Program initiative to sponsor a multi-phased plan for the support and development of KEGO Orphanage in Kenya. Immediate actions include securing more abundant and sustainable food and water sources, enhancements to the building and land, and providing basic supplies for the children. The longer-term goal is to build a well and establish an aquaponic system at the orphanage.
KEGO Orphanage was unanimously selected as the keystone project after Give Back Program Chairman, John Heap, was introduced to the need by Philemon Onyango, whose hometown of Onjinyo, Kenya is in an area with the highest concentration of HIV/AIDS in the world. Philemon created and funded KEGO Orphanage as a way to support the children of his hometown orphaned by the disease. So far, contributions from Colorado Lining, IAGI members, and other companies have resulted in:
- Over $50,000.00 cash donations.
- Purchase of additional land to be used as a play space and future orphanage development.
- Additional protein sources for the children’s meals such as locally-sourced peanut butter once a day and meat once a week.
- Greater classroom space for graduating 6th graders to continue their education.
- 210 student desks and chairs, 10 teachers’ desks, dry erase boards, and 5 computers with monitors.
- Children’s clothing and shoes.
Future developments include drilling a well for the orphanage to provide a sustainable water system, adding a tank system, and sending over a freight container with the materials necessary to build an aquaponic system. Timeline for development of the well and tank system is estimated for Q1 2017, with the aquaponic system to follow. The aquaponic system will allow children to raise tilapia and vegetables for a healthier and sustainable food source, while training the children for the three-year goal of running and developing the system independently. The vision is for the children to share the knowledge with neighboring villages to spread the impact.
John and Suzi Heap established Rippling Waters Charity, a501(c)(3) to accept and process donations to allow IAGI Companies and other private companies and individuals to contribute to the KEGO Orphanage project. We ask for your help to make a difference in these children’s life and help them to build their own small economy with help from IAGI Companies and associated Manufacturer’s. All geosynthetic industry members are encouraged to get involved in helping these children.
For more information about KEGO Orphanage and how to get involved, visit www.ripplingwaterscharity.org.